Side effect of multaq

Multaq

Generic Name: dronedarone (droe NE da rone)
Brand Names: Multaq

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Nov 27, 2019.

  • Overview
  • Side Effects
  • Dosage
  • Professional
  • Interactions
  • More

What is Multaq?

Multaq (dronedarone) is a heart rhythm medicine that helps maintain normal heartbeats in certain people with life-threatening rhythm disorders of the atrium (the upper chambers of the heart that allow blood to flow into the heart).

Multaq helps lower your risk of needing to be hospitalized for a heart rhythm disorder called atrial fibrillation.

Multaq is for people who have had this disorder in the past, but now have normal heart rhythm.

Important information

You should not use Multaq if you have severe liver disease, if you are pregnant or breast-feeding, or if you have ever used amiodarone and then had liver or lung problems. You should not use Multaq if you have a serious heart condition such as very slow heartbeats, “sick sinus syndrome,” or “AV block” (unless you have a pacemaker).

Multaq can double your risk of death if you have certain heart conditions. You should not use this medicine if you have severe heart failure, if you were recently hospitalized for worsening heart failure symptoms, or if you have a “permanent” type of atrial fibrillation (this will be determined by your doctor).

Check your pulse often, and tell your doctor right away if you notice an irregular rhythm.

Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any you start or stop using. Many drugs can interact with dronedarone, and some drugs should not be used together.

Multaq can cause liver problems. Call your doctor at once if you have symptoms such as nausea, loss of appetite, unusual tiredness, dark urine, or yellowing of your skin or eyes.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use Multaq if you are allergic to dronedarone, or if:

  • you have severe liver disease;

  • you have a serious heart condition such as “sick sinus syndrome,” “AV block” (unless you have a pacemaker), or very slow heartbeats that have caused you to faint;

  • you are pregnant or breast-feeding; or

  • you used a medicine called amiodarone and then had lung problems or liver problems.

Multaq is used to treat intermittent or “temporary” heart rhythm disorders. In some people with “permanent” atrial fibrillation, dronedarone increased the risk of stroke, hospitalization, and death. Multaq can double your risk of death if you have certain heart conditions. You should not use this medicine if:

  • you have severe heart failure;

  • you were recently hospitalized for worsening heart failure symptoms (shortness of breath, chest tightness, night-time breathing problems, swelling, rapid weight gain); or

  • you have a “permanent” atrial fibrillation that cannot be changed back to a normal rhythm (this will be determined by your doctor).

Some medicines can cause unwanted or dangerous effects when used with Multaq. Your doctor may need to change your treatment plan if you use any of the following drugs:

  • cyclosporine;

  • ritonavir;

  • other heart rhythm medicines;

  • an antibiotic – azithromycin, clarithromycin, erythromycin, levofloxacin, moxifloxacin, pentamidine, telithromycin;

  • antifungal medicine – ketoconazole, itraconazole, voriconazole;

  • an antidepressant – amitriptyline, amoxapine, clomipramine, desipramine, doxepin, imipramine, maprotiline, mirtazapine, nefazodone, nortriptyline, protriptyline, trimipramine; or

  • antipsychotic medicine – chlorpromazine, fluphenazine, perphenazine, prochlorperazine, promethazine, thioridazine, trifluoperazine.

To make sure Multaq is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have ever had:

  • other heart problems;

  • an electrolyte imbalance (such as low levels of potassium or magnesium in your blood); or

  • liver or kidney disease.

Do not use Multaq if you are pregnant. It could harm the unborn baby or cause birth defects. Use effective birth control to prevent pregnancy while you are using this medicine and tell your doctor if you become pregnant.

It is not known whether dronedarone passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while taking Multaq.

How should I take Multaq?

Take Multaq exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Multaq works best if you take it with your morning and evening meals.

Your heart function may need to be checked using an electrocardiograph or ECG (sometimes called an EKG) every 3 months. This will help your doctor determine how long to treat you with dronedarone. Your liver and kidney function may also need to be checked.

Check your own pulse often, and call your doctor right away if you notice an irregular rhythm.

Use Multaq regularly even if you feel fine or have no symptoms. Get your prescription refilled before you run out of medicine completely.

You should not stop using this medicine suddenly. Stopping suddenly may make your condition worse.

Store at room temperature away from heat and moisture.

Multaq dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Atrial Fibrillation:

400 mg orally 2 times a day with a meal
Use: To reduce the risk of cardiovascular hospitalization in patients with paroxysmal or persistent atrial fibrillation (AF) or atrial flutter (AFL), with a recent episode of AF/AFL and associated cardiovascular risk factors (i.e., age greater than 70 years, hypertension, diabetes, prior cerebrovascular accident, left atrial diameter 50 mm or more, or left ventricular ejection fraction less than 40%), who are in sinus rhythm or who will be cardioverted.

Usual Adult Dose for Atrial Flutter:

400 mg orally 2 times a day with a meal
Use: To reduce the risk of cardiovascular hospitalization in patients with paroxysmal or persistent atrial fibrillation (AF) or atrial flutter (AFL), with a recent episode of AF/AFL and associated cardiovascular risk factors (i.e., age greater than 70 years, hypertension, diabetes, prior cerebrovascular accident, left atrial diameter 50 mm or more, or left ventricular ejection fraction less than 40%), who are in sinus rhythm or who will be cardioverted.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Skip the missed dose and take the next regularly scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

What should I avoid while taking Multaq?

Grapefruit and grapefruit juice may interact with dronedarone and lead to unwanted side effects. Avoid the use of grapefruit products while taking Multaq.

Multaq side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction to Multaq: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • shortness of breath (even with mild exertion), swelling, rapid weight gain;

  • chest pain, wheezing, trouble breathing, dry cough, or coughing up mucus;

  • breathing problems while lying down trying to sleep;

  • severe dizziness, fainting, fast or pounding heartbeats;

  • slow heart rate, feeling like you might pass out;

  • a new or a worsening irregular heartbeat pattern;

  • kidney problems – little or no urination, swelling in your feet or ankles, feeling tired or short of breath; or

  • liver problems – nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, unusual tiredness, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).

Common Multaq side effects may include:

  • stomach pain, indigestion, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea;

  • feeling weak or tired; or

  • skin rash, itching, or redness.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect Multaq?

Many drugs can interact with dronedarone. Not all possible interactions are listed here. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any you start or stop using, especially:

  • digoxin;

  • St. John’s wort;

  • a blood thinner (warfarin, Coumadin, Jantoven);

  • heart or blood pressure medication;

  • medicines to treat tuberculosis;

  • medicine to prevent organ transplant rejection;

  • seizure medicine; or

  • “statin” cholesterol medication (Lipitor, Zocor, Vytorin, and others).

This list is not complete and many other drugs can interact with Multaq. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Give a list of all your medicines to any healthcare provider who treats you.

Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use Multaq only for the indication prescribed.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Copyright 1996-2020 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 12.01.

Medical Disclaimer

More about Multaq (dronedarone)

  • Side Effects
  • During Pregnancy
  • Dosage Information
  • Drug Images
  • Drug Interactions
  • Support Group
  • Pricing & Coupons
  • En Español
  • 33 Reviews
  • Drug class: group III antiarrhythmics
  • FDA Alerts (3)
  • FDA Approval History

Consumer resources

  • Multaq
  • Multaq (Advanced Reading)

Professional resources

  • Multaq (AHFS Monograph)
  • … +1 more

Related treatment guides

  • Atrial Fibrillation
  • Atrial Flutter

Antiarrhythmic Medication: Amiodarone

What you need to know about Amiodarone

Amiodarone (Cordarone) is used to treat and prevent an irregular heartbeat. It slows down nerve activity in the heart and relaxes an overactive heart.

When should it be used?

Amiodarone is usually taken once or twice a day. Your doctor may start your therapy with more frequent doses and then taper down the dosing. Follow the instructions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your pharmacist or doctor to explain any part that you do not understand.

It is important that you take this medication exactly as your doctor has prescribed. Never stop taking it without consulting your doctor. This medication must be taken regularly for one to three weeks before a response is seen and for several months before the full effect occurs. Due to the drug’s long half-life, it will remain in your body for up to two months.

How should it be used?

Amiodarone comes in tablets. Your prescription label tells you how much to take at each dose. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.

What special instructions should I follow while using this drug?

  • Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory so that your response to this medication can be monitored. Blood tests, electrocardiograms (EKGs) and chest X-rays may be performed periodically. Your dosage may need to be adjusted (or the drug may be stopped temporarily), depending on your response.
  • Follow your doctor’s advice on smoking and diet, including beverages containing alcohol and caffeine.
  • Cigarettes and beverages that contain caffeine may increase the irritability of your heart and interfere with the action of amiodarone.
  • Always have enough of this medication on hand. Check your supply before vacations, holidays, and other times when you may be unable to get more medication.

What should I do if I forget to take a dose?

Skip the missed dose and take only your next regularly scheduled dose. Do not take a double dose.

What side effects can this drug cause? What can I do about them?

  • Nausea, vomiting, constipation, loss of appetite, abdominal pain (about 25 percent of patients). Take amiodarone with meals.
  • Tremors; lack of coordination or difficulty walking; dizziness, weakness or fatigue; trouble sleeping or sleep disturbances; headache; sexual disturbances; weight loss; abnormal taste or smell; vision problems such as blurred vision, halos around objects, sensitivity to light, dry eyes and corneal microdeposits; flushing; swelling of feet, ankles or lower legs; blue-gray discoloration of the skin (especially face and hands) and sensitivity of skin exposed to sunlight. Call your doctor, especially if these effects are severe or persistent.
  • Cough, shortness of breath or painful breathing, swelling of abdomen, irregular or rapid heartbeat Contact your doctor immediately. (These effects can occur even after you stop taking this medication.)
  • If you experience any other side effects that you think could be caused by this medication and/or are of concern to you, call your doctor.

What other precautions should I follow while using this drug?

Before taking amiodarone, tell your doctor:

  • If you have a history of lung, liver, heart or thyroid disease. Periodic blood work will need to be done to test your liver and thyroid function. You may also be asked to perform a breathing test to measure your pulmonary (lung) function.
  • The names of all vitamins, herbals, dietary supplements, nonprescription (over the counter) and other prescription medications you take. Amiodarone can keep many medications from working they way they should.
  • If are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you plan to become pregnant.

This medication can make your skin more sensitive than usual to sunlight and sunlamps, which could cause a serious burn. This effect may continue for weeks or months after you stop taking amiodarone. If you will be outside for long periods of time, wear protective clothing and use a sunscreen. A burn can occur even through window glass or thin cotton. Also, cover your head if you must go into the sunlight. Sun exposure may make you more likely to develop a blue-gray skin discoloration, which may not go away completely after discontinuing amiodarone. Before having surgery, tell the doctor or dentist in charge that you are taking amiodarone (or if you have taken the drug within the past two months). Do not allow anyone else to take your medication.

When is the medication given?

You will receive the first dose of medication in the evening on the day you are admitted to the hospital. Your doctor will tell you how to take the medication at home.

How should I store this drug?

  • Keep this medication in its original container, with the lid tightly closed. Store it at room temperature and protect it from light.
  • Keep amiodarone out of the reach of children.
  • Never share your medication with anyone.
  • Never take outdated medications. Some medication prescription labels list an expiration date. If such a date is not on your medication label or if you are unsure how old a medication is, call your pharmacy.

If you have any questions or concerns about this medication, please talk to your doctor.

This is a summary of information to help you understand and safely take your medication. Ask your doctor and/or pharmacist for more information about your medications and special instructions you may need based on your overall health.

This information is not intended to replace the medical advice of your doctor or health care provider. Please consult your health care provider for advice about a specific medical condition.

Share Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Email Get useful, helpful and relevant health + wellness information enews

Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy

Multaq is the brand name of the generic prescription drug dronedarone.

It’s used to treat people who currently have a normal heart rhythm but have had atrial fibrillation (a disorder that causes an irregular heartbeat) in the past.

The drug lowers the risk of hospitalization in these people.

Multaq belongs to a class of drugs known as anti-arrhythmics. It works by helping the heart beat in a normal rhythm.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Multaq in 2009. It’s manufactured by Sanofi.

Multaq Warnings

Multaq contains a black-box warning because it may increase the risk of death in people with severe heart failure.

Tell your doctor if you have heart failure that causes shortness of breath while at rest or after minimal physical exertion.

Also let your healthcare provider know if you’ve been hospitalized for heart failure in the past month.

The drug also contains a black-box warning because it shouldn’t be used if you have permanent atrial fibrillation that can’t be brought back to normal.

Multaq may increase the risk of hospitalization, stroke, or death in people with permanent atrial fibrillation. The medicine should only be used to treat temporary heart rhythm disorders.

Call your doctor immediately if you notice a fast or irregular heartbeat while taking Multaq.

Before using this drug, tell your doctor if you have, or have ever had:

  • Any type of heart problem
  • Liver disease
  • Liver or lung problems that developed after taking the medicines Cordarone or Pacerone (amiodarone)
  • Kidney disease
  • An electrolyte imbalance (such as low levels of potassium or magnesium in the blood)
  • A pacemaker or defibrillator
  • Allergies to medications

Your doctor will probably want to perform frequent tests to check your body’s response to Multaq. Keep all appointments with your doctor and laboratory.

Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of Multaq. Talk to your doctor if this is a concern.

Tell your health care provider you’re taking Multaq before having any type of surgery, including a dental procedure.

Continue to take Multaq even if you feel well. Don’t stop taking the drug without first talking to your doctor.

Pregnancy and Multaq

Multaq can harm an unborn baby or cause birth defects. Don’t take this medicine if you’re pregnant.

Tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant while taking Multaq.

Be sure to use an effective form of birth control if you’re a woman of childbearing age who takes the drug.

It’s not known whether Multaq passes into breast milk or could hurt a breastfeeding baby. Don’t breastfeed while taking Multaq.

Dronedarone

Before taking dronedarone,

  • tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to dronedarone, any other medications, or any of the ingredients in dronedarone tablets. Ask your pharmacist or check the Medication Guide for a list of the ingredients.
  • tell your doctor if you are taking any of the following medications: certain antidepressants such as amitriptyline (in Limbitrol), amoxapine, clomipramine (Anafranil), desipramine (Norpramin), doxepin (Sinequan), imipramine (Tofranil), nortriptyline (Aventyl, Pamelor), protriptyline (Vivactil), and trimipramine (Surmontil); certain antifungals such as itraconazole (Sporanox), ketoconazole (Nizoral), or voriconazole (Vfend); clarithromycin (Biaxin); cyclosporine (Gengraf, Neoral, Sandimmune); erythromycin (E.E.S., E-Mycin, Erythrocin); medications for irregular heartbeat such as amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone), disopyramide (Norpace), dofetilide (Tikosyn), flecainide (Tambocor), propafenone (Rythmol), quinidine, and sotalol (Betapace); nefazodone; phenothiazine medications for mental illness or nausea; ritonavir (Norvir); or telithromycin (Ketek). Your doctor may tell you not to take dronedarone if you are taking one or more of these medications.
  • tell your doctor and pharmacist what other prescription and nonprescription medications, vitamins, and nutritional supplements you are taking or plan to take. Be sure to mention any of the following: anticoagulants (blood thinners) such as dabigatran (Pradaxa) and warfarin (Coumadin); beta blockers such as atenolol (Tenormin), labetalol (Normodyne), metoprolol (Lopressor, Toprol XL), nadolol (Corgard), and propranolol (Inderal); calcium channel blockers such as diltiazem (Cardizem, Dilacor, Tiazac), nifedipine (Adalat, Procardia), and verapamil (Calan, Covera, Isoptin, Verelan); carbamazepine (Epitol, Equetro, Tegretol); cholesterol-lowering medications (statins) such as atorvastatin (Lipitor), fluvastatin (Lescol), lovastatin (Mevacor), pravastatin (Pravachol), and simvastatin (Zocor); digoxin (Lanoxicaps, Lanoxin); diuretics (water pills); phenobarbital; phenytoin (Dilantin); rifampin (Rifadin, Rimactane); selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) such as citalopram (Celexa), escitalopram (Lexapro), fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem), fluvoxamine (Luvox), paroxetine (Paxil), and sertraline (Zoloft); sirolimus (Rapamune); and tacrolimus (Prograf). Your doctor may need to change the doses of your medications or monitor you carefully for side effects.
  • tell your doctor what herbal products you are taking, especially St. John’s wort.
  • tell your doctor if you have any other heart problems such as a fast or slow heartbeat, a long QT interval (a heart problem that may cause irregular heartbeat, fainting, or sudden death), liver disease, or if you have had liver or lung problems that developed after taking amiodarone (Pacerone). Your doctor may tell you not to take dronedarone.
  • tell your doctor if you have or have ever had any other medical conditions.
  • tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. You must use effective birth control during your treatment with dronedarone. Talk to your doctor about birth control methods that will work for you. If you become pregnant while taking dronedarone, call your doctor immediately. Dronedarone may harm the fetus.
  • you should not breast-feed during your treatment with dronedarone.
  • talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of taking dronedarone if you are 65 years of age or older. Some older adults should not take dronedarone because it is not as safe or effective as other medications that can be used to treat the same condition.

dronedarone (Multaq)

Brand Names: Multaq

Generic Name: dronedarone

  • What is dronedarone (Multaq)?
  • What are the possible side effects of dronedarone (Multaq)?
  • What is the most important information I should know about dronedarone (Multaq)?
  • What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking dronedarone (Multaq)?
  • How should I take dronedarone (Multaq)?
  • What happens if I miss a dose (Multaq)?
  • What happens if I overdose (Multaq)?
  • What should I avoid while taking dronedarone (Multaq)?
  • What other drugs will affect dronedarone (Multaq)?
  • Where can I get more information (Multaq)?

What is dronedarone (Multaq)?

Dronedarone is a heart rhythm medicine that helps maintain normal heartbeats in certain people with life-threatening rhythm disorders of the atrium (the upper chambers of the heart that allow blood to flow into the heart).

Dronedarone helps lower your risk of needing to be hospitalized for a heart rhythm disorder called atrial fibrillation. Dronedarone is for people who have had this disorder in the past, but now have normal heart rhythm.

Dronedarone may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

000244142_PB

oval, white, imprinted with LOGO, 4142

What are the possible side effects of dronedarone (Multaq)?

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • shortness of breath (even with mild exertion), swelling, rapid weight gain;
  • chest pain, wheezing, trouble breathing, dry cough, or coughing up mucus;
  • breathing problems while lying down trying to sleep;
  • severe dizziness, fainting, fast or pounding heartbeats;
  • slow heart rate, feeling like you might pass out;
  • a new or a worsening irregular heartbeat pattern;
  • kidney problems–little or no urination, swelling in your feet or ankles, feeling tired or short of breath; or
  • liver problems–nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, unusual tiredness, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).

Common side effects may include:

  • stomach pain, indigestion, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea;
  • feeling weak or tired; or
  • skin rash, itching, or redness.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is the most important information I should know about dronedarone (Multaq)?

You should not use dronedarone if you have severe liver disease, if you are pregnant or breast-feeding, or if you have ever used amiodarone and then had liver or lung problems. You should not use dronedarone if you have a serious heart condition such as very slow heartbeats, “sick sinus syndrome,” or “AV block” (unless you have a pacemaker).

Dronedarone can double your risk of death if you have certain heart conditions. You should not use this medicine if you have severe heart failure, if you were recently hospitalized for worsening heart failure symptoms, or if you have a “permanent” type of atrial fibrillation (this will be determined by your doctor).

Check your pulse often, and tell your doctor right away if you notice an irregular rhythm.

Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any you start or stop using. Many drugs can interact with dronedarone, and some drugs should not be used together.

Dronedarone can cause liver problems. Call your doctor at once if you have symptoms such as nausea, loss of appetite, unusual tiredness, dark urine, or yellowing of your skin or eyes.

About the author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *